TT~Pittsburgh~4/27/12

5'3in~129lbs~2 C/Sections and Ventral Hernia...

5'3in~129lbs~2 C/Sections and Ventral Hernia Repair/Mesh~I'm a RN~Very Bad Pain tolerance~using On~Q

Has anyone every changed PS? I guess I prematurely...

Has anyone every changed PS? I guess I prematurely scheduled my TT Surgery without interviewing all the Doc's I selected...Well it turns out, I loved the last Doc the Best...Bad Part is she is soo booked so now I have to wait until May. I hope I dont chicken out before then.

Ok...Crazy I know....Back to the original Surgeon....

Ok...Crazy I know....Back to the original Surgeon...Cannot wait until May~I'm not patient! Scheduled for a TT on 4/27/12....!

I'm 38 years old. I'm 5ft 3in and weigh 130lbs. I...

I'm 38 years old. I'm 5ft 3in and weigh 130lbs. I had 2 C/Sections and a previous Ventral Hernia Repair with Mesh...Have to say....The TT takes the cake in Pain! Who would even compare this to a C/S? O~M~G....I have the On~Q Pain Buster, Taking 2 Percocets every 4 Hours and Toradol every 8 hours. I could not imagine going through this surgery without the On~Q Pain Pump. The PS in this area dont use them? I had a hard time finding a Doc that would use one. It took them 2 weeks to tell me how much they would charge me for it? ($395).
The incision line doesnt hurt at all. All my pain is "high" on my abdomen~an extremely tight "deep pull" feeling. My 2 Recovery Room Nurses sucked. They made 2 inapropriate comments to me. They were "young" nurses and missed the boat on being a patient advocate. I plan on reporting them on Monday. I took a lot of IV Pain meds yesterday Post-op. (Fentanyl and Dilaudid)...I had a hard time Peeing afterwards. In fact, I didnt empty my bladder for 24 hours. (A very common side-effect post anesthesia/IV Narcs) I thought I was going to have to go back in to get Straight Cathed, but Thank the Good Lord, I peed. My bladder is slowly rebounding. I feel drowsy today (nodding off often), probably sleeping- off the anesthesia. I havent seen my belly yet? I havent taken the Binder off yet. My PS didnt talk to me in Recovery? He talked to my husband. Gonna try to get a modified shower this evening. My appetite is slowly coming back today too. Last night I was nauseated but never vomited. I'm a RN and my hubby is a RN too. I've been trying to walk around the house as much as I can, especially with bathroom trips. My Kids are 8 (Justin) and 5(Bella) so they are pretty self-sufficient. They assisted my hubby(Joe) with Drain Care last night! HaHa...Between the "Oh's" and "Awe's", I'm not sure if they liked it or not! I'm not wild about my PS but I do think he's a great surgeon. He's the type that doesnt want to hear any complaints/questions. Hey, if he gives me the "results" I want, that works for me! After interviewing 4 PS in the Pittsburgh area, I have to say~I didnt think the choices were all that great? Again, nurses are tough patients to please. I'm hoping I can wear a Bikini this summer. I'm soo over Tankini's and Spanx. Thanks for listening and I hoped I helped someone out there:) Love, Amy ..PS: Please note, this was the Total Cost including the On~Q and the Cosmetic Health Insurance Premium.

Ooops April 28th 2012....Post-op day #1

Ooops April 28th 2012....Post-op day #1

April 29th 2012...Post-op day #2 Hi everyone.....

April 29th 2012...Post-op day #2
Hi everyone...The pain is worse today than yesterday? I feel like the pain pills are not working? The Pain is everywhere~my back, the incision site, the belly button pulling~etc. I'm moving around a lot better today...maybe that's why I'm having more pain? I'm not as sleepy as yesterday either. I see the PS in the morning. I did have a BM today without any problems. The Dulcolax certainly made that easier. The Binder is so tight and uncomfortable, but it feels worse to have my abdomen open to air/unsecured. The PS told me to put Maxi-Pads under the Binder. There is very little drainage. The incision looks good, a little bruising. The Binder keeps "riding" up on me. Suprisingly the drains are not problematic for me? I thought they would be more annoying and cumbersome, but they're not. Also, the On~Q Pain Pump wires are tolerable too. I'm hoping I wake up tomorrow feeling a lot better than I do today. God Bless Everyone, Amy

April 30th 2012....Post-op Day #3 Saw the PS...

April 30th 2012....Post-op Day #3
Saw the PS today (briefly as he's in and out before you can open your mouth)..He said everything looked good~He told me I was 1 of his top 5 patients? I'm still draining way too much to have the Drains removed. (About a total of 150-200cc in 24 hours). I go back on Wednesday May 2nd to hopefuly get them out in addition to removing my pain pump. He said he likes to remove the Pain Pump himself.. I told him I'm having bilateral "Flank" Pain. He said it could be from the Surgery or it can be a Kidney Infection? I did not spike a Fever, Thank God. No burning with urination either.Also, theres a particular spot on my abdomen (upper left quadrant) that's really uncomfortable~constant burning if you will. He said its probably the tubing from the Drain..If that's the case, I cant wait for it to be removed! The Drainage Tubes havent really bothered me? I'm still very uncomfortable overall. Today, he prescribed me Vicoden ES rather than Percocet. I honestly dont think either one is helping. When you are cut from Hip to Hip, nothing is gonna take away the pain. I got a little discouraged last evening thinking why did I do this? It was so unneccessary?! I'm sure these feelings are quite normal. I was just bummed that nothing was taking away this pain. I came home from the PS office today and took a long nap. Our bodies have been so violated and traumatized. Dont forget proper nutrition and rest:) I know us Mommys are Rock Stars, but we must "give in" to our healing temples:)...May God Bless you all Richly, Love~Amy

May 1st...2012...Post-op Day #4 Hello to all. I...

May 1st...2012...Post-op Day #4
Hello to all. I wish I can type you and say "Yes" I feel great today! But I cant...not yet....I have this continual agitating pain in my upper left quadrant of my belly. As I mentioned yesterday, the PS thinks its one of my drainage tubes "coiling" up there. I pray I will feel on top of the world when it comes out. I'm still draining, draining , draining so I'm not sure they will be removed tomorrow @ my appointment. I'm groggy in the mornings, feel like I could sleep-in but as the day moves on, I feel much more energy. I hope my Review helps someone:)

May 7th....Post-op Day #10 I still have both of...

May 7th....Post-op Day #10
I still have both of my drains in. The Right one is draining 30-45 cc per day and the Left one is draining 15-35 cc. I'm hoping to get the Left one removed tomorrow. The insertion sites in my groin area are so red and sore. Not to mention, the constant discomfort in my upper abdomen thats been there all along. I felt like I "turned the corner" at the 1 week~7 day mark. At that time I felt like I would do this all over again! Crazy I know. Still on Pain meds every 4 hours around the clock. The pain meds really dont help with the pain. It feels like constant needles in my belly button. I'm not swollen and I hope I dont become swollen once the drains are removed....

May 8th.....Post-op Day #11 YAY:):):)...............

May 8th.....Post-op Day #11
YAY:):):)....................................................I feel like my good ole self today! I have energy and am able to get some small things done around the house without feeling fatigued or in pain. I got my Right Drain out today....Wow~What a relief...It did not hurt or burn at all. It feels so freeing. I can feel less "spaghetti" in my belly. My groin area instantly feels better too! The Nurse at my PS office said I looked swollen? I dont feel swollen at all. She said it could take 3-4 months for the swelling to subside. That is encouraging because I feel like I look decent now? Keep you posted.

May 11th......2 week Post-OP Ok..so I still have...

May 11th......2 week Post-OP
Ok..so I still have the Left groin drain. Still draining around 50cc per day. Some clots and stringy material noted:(....My BB feels like a needle is poking in it...I'm still on Narcotics. My PCP sent me for Bloodwork and Abdominal X-Ray yesterday. I have chronic anemia so she wanted to make sure my counts were normal, which they were~Praise the Lord. The X-Ray was normal too. The incision "burns". It does "pucker" at the very bottom but I noticed my incision is not real wide, which is good. I've seen a lot of photos where the incision line comes half-way around the waist. Mine does not, it ends "before" my hip bones. I feel good otherwise. I have energy and feel like myself. I dont feel like I had major surgery 2 weeks ago! XO

May 16th....19 Day Post-OP A few new events...

May 16th....19 Day Post-OP
A few new events happened today. I got my 2nd Drain out. It was draining about 28cc per 24 hours. Boy, she had a heck of time pulling the JP out, it got "caught" a couple of times on its way out of me. Thank the Lord It didnt hurt. She also removed my 5 stiches around my BB. Again, that didnt hurt either, I guess because my entire BB area is numb? The PA really liked the look of my BB~she took a photo of it:) I guess they were proud! Doc was in and out in 15 seconds~very typical. The PA assessed me and told me I'm about 30% swollen which is very normal. I managed to get in 1 Brief question for the Doc (he doesnt like to answer questions), asking him how long will the swelling take to decrease? His response was 3-4 months. They gave me my garment to wear 24/7~wow is this thing tight! I can barely breathe. Also, they recommend I massage my incision with plain old Vaseline. My Instructions were no exercising, running the vacum~etc. for 1 month from my surgery date. My Doc recommends plain old tape for the incision. They feel that works best along with "Time"...I guess Time heals all wounds:)....I went back to work today! I work Part-Time, sitting at a desk. Yes~I was very proud of myself cause I went back to work with a drain! It felt good going back. That's all for now...Dieing to buy a Bikini but being this swollen, its discouraging. Thinking back, I should have had this surgery done in September so I would be "ready" for Summer:)........Any comments or Suggestions are always Welcome:)

May 18th....3 weeks Post-OP Ok...So I'm taking a...

May 18th....3 weeks Post-OP
Ok...So I'm taking a step backward:( ....I'm in a lot of discomfort today. I think my BB is infected since the BB stiches were removed 2 days ago. I spiked a low temp 99.9 ...Theres a small spot inside my BB that appears to be "open" and pus/red/swollen and hot. I contacted the Surgeon and he put me on Keflex 4X per day and Vicodin ES for the pain. He thinks it may be a Seroma and wants to see me on Monday the 21st. I'm so discouraged because my Belly is so swollen. I "feel" like I do have a Seroma because when I push down one 1 side of my lower belly, it "ripples" through the rest of my belly like a wave. I've read on here thats what a Seroma looks like. So the swimming pools open next week and I guess I will still be in my Tankini:( ...I will keep you posted on what intervention the Surgeon does tomorrow:( ...Anyone else develop a Seroma when the drain came out 3 weeks post-op?

5/21/02.....Little over 3 weeks Saw the Surgeon...

5/21/02.....Little over 3 weeks
Saw the Surgeon today~Great News~I do not have a Seroma! Wow~You could have fooled me. When you press on my swollen belly, it makes a ripple wave. The Doc was not concerned~Go figure! He hasnt been concerned with anything~lol! ...He told me starting Friday (my 1 month mark) that I will have Zero Restrictions. He encouraged me to start working out. He told me to loose 5-7 lbs?! WTH?...I weight 130lbs...Anyways, I planned on doing that anyways but Geez, talk about Pressure. He wants to see me back in 6 weeks. Said my swollen belly is all normal. Still having pain and discomfort along the belly button area.
Pittsburgh Plastic Surgeon

May 21st Little over 3 Weeks post-op

3 out of 5 stars Overall rating
2 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
2 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
2 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
2 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
4 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
2 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
4 out of 5 stars Payment process
2 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Comments (27)

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I was just checking in on everyone who had there TT close to mine and seeing how you were doing and if you were satisfied. Would love to see some pictures.
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New Me~UGH~We nurses are tough patients. My hubby is a RN too so the 2 of us together, look out! I saw another PS for a 2nd opinion and he tried to drain my "Seroma" but didnt get anything. He said it could be loose skin?! I wasnt expecting to hear that! I surely hope he's wrong and its just swelling...I will keep you posted. He said it appears like I should have been "pulled tighter"? Here I thought it was fluid...? You can visually see it moving, like a wave when you press on my belly...He suggested to massage my belly down and outward 4X per day and to wear the garment 24-7...Anyone else out there think they had fluid but was told it was "loose skin"? UGH!
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Hey AMY I am also an RN. And will be on them like white on rice for any little thing. Sometimes I like to play stupid and see what they teach me in regards to pre-op, post op and the intra-operative period. That way I can see if they know what they are talking about. If you have a seroma can you just see your regular DR and have them either drain it or at least document it so that you can take it to someone that can. I know what you mean about choosing a PS that listens to your concerns and can communicate effectively. I am sorry you are going through this. HANG IN THERE
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Thanks Pink Vegas....I definately agree with you...Its way too much fluid for my body to reabsorb:(.............I dont know what I'm gonna do yet because I'm not returning to him. He's inappopriate and I made a poor choice in selecting him. I will keep you posted...Thanks for the Tip on the Compression:)
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If he doesn't want to drain it, does be at least have you compressing it.
I know after she drained the first time she had me put a wash cloth over
the area for compression and told me to compress the area so I wrapped
an ace bandage around that. If there is a lot of fluid, I would think it would
be too much for the body to absorb. What does he plan to do? Ugghh!
I'm sorry this is happening to you :(
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Hi Pink Vegas...I'm tight, walking hunched and have puckering too. I DO have a Seroma but my PS doesnt want to drain it...That concerns me. Its very "noticeable"....You dont have to press down on my belly to see the "wave"...If I just walk or "jiggle" my belly, you can see it. I'm so unhappy with my PS choice~I've divorced him.....:(
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Hi Kimmers~Thanks for your confirmation. I like my curves. I havent been fond of my Surgeon since minute 1. RN's are tough customers. I'm seeing my PCP today because I "feel" like something is not right?? I have so much rippling-like "wave" fluid in my lower belly. Also, I'm havng BB pain? Have you heard of anyone having "pain" this far out?? I will let you know what my PCP says today...Thanks again Kimmers for all you do! Amy
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I am still very tight and walking hunched over. I have the rippling to near the incision
but I had fluid hat had to be drained 120cc the first time and 20cc the last time.
After she removed the fluid I had a lot of loose skin. My ps told me that now the
skin had to reattach to the muscle. After about a week or so the area attached but
there is still some loose skin. She is not concerned because she says it's not fluid.
I am still very swollen so I'm sure that can't help. I just try to lay flat at night
And I don't really do too much. Good luck and keep us posted. All I
keep hearing is that this is a VERY LONG healing process.
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Thanks Kimmers~You Rock! I'm so not a patient person. I'm trying! Amy
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Only drop the additional pounds if that is something you want to do.  Stay within your comfort zone.  I am not one to get fixed on the scale number.  Your a tiny woman and do not want to get too thin.  Curves are necessary:)  

Just know girlie that things improve each month and you will get there.  This takes time and one day you will wake up and realize you are there!! 

It will all be ok I promise!

Hugs

 

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Stay on the antiobiotics and that will clear the infection pretty quickly. 

The swelling is all part of this process and only takes time to settle down.  I know this is frustrating but it will all come to an end.  Also, having the fluid drained will really help and feel so much better.

The healing process is something that can't be rushed and you need a lot of patience.  Hang in there and all will turn around.  This is just a little speed bump and you will make it.

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WHen you gonna post some pics???
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So glad you are feeling better!!! Those drains are horrible. My right side one must have irritated the inside of me and it still hurt today if I press on the area it was in. That was 2 weeks ago they removed it.

Glad everything is going good!!! :)
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Glad you are feeling better and getting your energy back:)

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Once u get stains out u will feel a lot Better. Mine were draining less than 5 after a week. Keep on top of your meds. After PS switches from binder to compression garment. I still wore the binder on top for 2to 3weeks ESP when i was really busy.
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My pain pump was the Moog. It lines fell out prior to my first post op follow up...it is hilarious how they treat you when they want that money...NOT COOL... I am livid at this point, I will try again tomorrow to contact him, but I doubt I will get in contact with him prior to my post op visit this Wednesday...as far as my results, I love my incision and whatnot, but his responsiveness is ridiculous... and is going to impede my review of this process as a whole :-/
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Hi~Every single movement, I cringe. Mine are slowing down today. But like you said, they are doing there job. Wow~I cant beleive the PS will let your mom remove it? My PS had us go in to remove my On~Q pump, he wouldnt allow my Hubby (a RN) to remove it...Funny how the PS was so available to you before he got payment~right? I'm not too pleased with mine either. He doesnt want you to ask him any questions. Amy
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Thank You Mrs. C~Both Drains are still in...Still draining about 55cc per Drain. So I guess we will go the weekend with them in:(....Praying for Monday they can take the Left one out. Were yours producing a lot of clots? Mine are now....Glad they are still in...(in a way!..sorta?)......Love, Amy
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Mine were producing a lot of clots over the weekend, my left one is now draining about 10-15CC per day, but the right one... (WHICH I HATE!!!) is draining about 55 still roughly... I want them out... I see why everyone says its different after they are out! ---I have had a hard time reaching my PS... which is really irritating, my mom is an RN and we discussed during my follow-up just having my mom cut the sutures and remove the drains, which he said "should be ok", I am hoping once I meet with him Wednesday that I can get them out at that time... I am glad I am getting a alot of fluid out now...versus having them aspirate my stomach to remove the fluid, overall I am please with how my shape is turning out and what not... :-)
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Hi Mrs. C...Thanks for the encouragement. Did you feel like a new woman when they came out? I'm really hoping for that! I may be getting close on the 1 Drain but now we are heading into the weekend:( I probably will have to wait till Monday~UGH! Amy
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Hey Amy... how are you doing today? I did feel like a new woman even when just the one drain came out and the second one was just that much better. If they just do one at a time, make sure they take out the one causing you pain!! Just a couple more days... just keep remembering what will come next and you're almost there!!
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Hi Amy... As annoying as those drains can be, take it day by day and know that soon they will come out. I got my first one out 8 days PO and my second one 12 days PO. Yes you will love it once they are out but when it's painful just try to stay positive and know the pain will pass soon. I would keep telling myself they are in there for a reason and the longer they stay the better off I'll be... :) Hope you're doing better today.
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Hi CamKey~I agree about the Drains. I can "feel" them up in my abdomen~not pleasant. Besides the constant "pulling" ...I started to get discouraged last night...I'm a little better today....Amy
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Congrats!! You are probably having more pain because you are moving more. i am 6 days PO today and I am going for my PO appt. I hope these drains come out today the get on my nerves! Good Luck again!!
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Hi There~I'm going with Dr. Guy Stofman at Mercy. I wanted a On~Q Pain Pump and he's willing to use one. I have to pay x-tra for it.
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